Session: Improving Hiring, Retention, and Promotion of Bipoc Faculty (Society for Social Work and Research 27th Annual Conference - Social Work Science and Complex Problems: Battling Inequities + Building Solutions)

All in-person and virtual presentations are in Mountain Standard Time Zone (MST).

SSWR 2023 Poster Gallery: as a registered in-person and virtual attendee, you have access to the virtual Poster Gallery which includes only the posters that elected to present virtually. The rest of the posters are presented in-person in the Poster/Exhibit Hall located in Phoenix A/B, 3rd floor. The access to the Poster Gallery will be available via the virtual conference platform the week of January 9. You will receive an email with instructions how to access the virtual conference platform.

209 Improving Hiring, Retention, and Promotion of Bipoc Faculty

Saturday, January 14, 2023: 8:00 AM-9:30 AM
Encanto B, 2nd Level (Sheraton Phoenix Downtown)
Cluster: Race and Ethnicity
Ijeoma Nwabuzor Ogbonnaya, PhD,
Matt Ignacio, PhD, Arizona State University, Tina Jiwatram-Negron, PhD, Arizona State University, Stephanie Lechuga-Peña, PhD, Arizona State University, Natasha Mendoza, PhD, Arizona State University and Ijeoma Nwabuzor Ogbonnaya, PhD,
Research demonstrates glaring disparities in rates of white and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) faculty by academic rank, with white men (53%) and women (27%) making up more than three-quarters of full professors in the United States. As a profession, social workers are responsible for dismantling systems of oppression, promoting equity and inclusion, and creating and implementing just systems. Yet, the academy's structural inequities (e.g., policies, procedures) disadvantage BIPOC faculty as they are embedded in hiring, promotion, and tenure decisions. These inequities have become especially salient among social work faculty and the public due to the heightened awareness of the marginalization of BIPOC communities and national conversations around anti-racism, anti-Blackness, anti-Asian, white supremacy, and systemic racism.

This roundtable session will begin a dialogue about the need for schools of social work to better support BIPOC faculty. As BIPOC social work faculty, who are primarily women, we often hold dual identities, as "insiders" and "outsiders." We work within BIPOC communities, sharing some common challenges, yet, we are outsiders as scholars conducting research on these issues within the academy. The various systems within which we matriculate and work, including academia, are inherently built on a foundation of white supremacy and patriarchy that often disempowers social work scholarship produced by BIPOC scholars and about BIPOC communities.

Using critical race theory (CRT), we will first discuss how race and racism impact BIPOC tenure-track/tenured faculty in predominantly white institutions (i.e., the academy) and lead to undervaluing and overburdening. Then, we will use an intersectional lens to present empirical evidence and provide case examples illustrating how being undervalued continues to oppress and disempower BIPOC scholars within academia. Panelists will focus particular attention on the following areas of this counter-narrative: (1) research epistemologies and methods; (2) personnel practices and decision-making; and (3) service and invisible labor.

The panel will conclude with discussions of recommendations for addressing these areas of oppression, such as convening a multi-university effort to re-think promotion criteria for scholars engaged in diversity, equity, and disparity work. Such an effort could have implications for the promotion of social work scholars, many of whom are BIPOC. We will also provide recommendations for addressing the effects of racism in academia (e.g., tokenism, solo status, John Henryism) at both individual and institutional levels and holding schools of social work accountable for racism.

Attendees will be invited to dialogue with the panel, sharing their experiences and ideas regarding micro-, mezzo-, and structural opportunities to improve the structures of social work academia to properly support the careers of BIPOC social work faculty. The goal of the roundtable is to initiate timely and critical discussion, leading to new, anti-racist practices of supporting and evaluating BIPOC scholarship and related teaching and service.

See more of: Roundtables